Inside Bandarban III
From my last post Inside Bandarban II you know that we spent the night of 20th Feb on the peak of keokradong. So it’s 21st February from which I will start my new post. It was the International Mother Language day, we had the grand opportunity to show respect to the Martyrs of language movement at the highest Shahid Minar ( Martyr monument) just after the Passing Para at Kekoradong. The day was also remarkable at it was the hardest day of our campaign. So we started early from the top of Keokradong on our way towards the Tajingdong. Our plan that day was to reach second highest village of the country Simplampi para (Bawm Para) which was a 2 hrs walk from the Tajingdong. So after paying our respect to the Language Martyrs we set out for the Simplampi para. To me this trail was a difficult trail to go one. Upto Keokradong it was child’s play but on this very trails to the Tajingdong we felt how tiring trek it was for amateur trekker like us. There is no flat land in the trail. It’s just mountains & hills everywehere. One have to cross mountains only to go forward, there is no shortcut or no other ways around the mountains. The only path is to climb up the mountain and then go down. I remembered every time we climbed down we used to shout out loudly ” why going down?” coz once you go down you have to go up.
We started the day by paying respect to the Martyrs of language movement.
We followed the trail through mountains and hills. It was majestic view from the top of the mountains we could see the mountain ranges from the top it was like a carpet on the surface of earth with small hills all over the place. We advanced keeping the Mijoram state on our East side and Mayanmaer on the South- East. The birds eye view of the land was just jaw dropping. We were getting thirsty very frequently as there is shortage of water on such high elevated grounds. But that didn’t stopped us from feeling and realising the beauty we have been gifted by.
The carpet of mountains
After walking for about 2 hrs we reached a remarkable mountain called Kapital Mountain. The trail through Kapital mountains is bit difficult coz the trail leads through a vegetation of the mountain and the path is very risky also as it was very narrow. At some points it was like big wall of mountain on one side and nothing on the other side. So, if anyone slips he will fall almost 2000 feet from the top. We approached carefully and we got exhausted, it was really a bit difficult terrain.
The trail through Kapital mountain
The thick vegetation of Kapital mountain
There is a history about the name Kapital mountain. The history is that the insurgency group that raised in the Mizoram state of India corssed the border and made there camp in this mountain. They diclared this mountain as the capital of free Mizoram. After that when BD arny infiltrated the hill tracts they escaped from this place to the depth of the mountains. The Baklai army camp which was also the abandoned camp of the Mizoram guerilla group. As we travelled through the place I was thinking about the guerillas who also walked along this path long ago.
The thick forest just after Kapital Hill
By afternoon we reached a Bawm tribal village named Baklai para .We took our lunch there, it was maggi noodles with water only. I can guarantee that I haven’t taken a better noodles in my entire life . After some rest we head for the Baklai army camp. We reported there and again started our journey towards Simplampi para.
Tajingdong (the middle one) from a nearby mountain before Simplampi
The last mountain before Simplampi para.
Entrance to the Simplampi para
We reached Simplampi para at the dusk. We were each a hell of a tired piece and we were so hungry that we could even have eaten a whole cow. This village is about 3000 ft above the sea level. There is no water nearby. So again we had to climb down some feets to get a reservoir of water. The water was very less and they use it for drinking so we took water from the reservoir very carefully. After cleaning ourselves we got back in the house of the Karbari (the head of the village) where we would stay for the night. Karbari’s wife served us with raw tea with no sugar. But the tea was very refreshing. We laid took rest a bit and at about 8 we took our dinner. Our guide Mr. Nuru cooked a great meal- chicken, pulse, rice and smashed potatoes. The dinner place was a bit uncomfortable. As we entered the dining place it was loaded with men, women and children. Half of the village have gathered there to watch us eating. They sat around us as though we were some kind of creatures. But we didn’t mind at all because we had only food in our mind at that time and nothing else. We gossiped after dinner and listened to the tribal songs they were hearing and at the Mass in the local church and eventually fell asleep.
Next day we woke up early in the morning and one of my friend rushed towards the toilet (if u call it so!!!) for the call of nature and he came back quickly and his report about the toilet was not pleasant. But nothing to do I had to go for the call of nature. The experience in that toilet is very odd. There was no conventional toilet just a pair of wood planks at an elevated height. And at the bottom pigs and chicken were wandering about in search of “YOU KNOW WHAT”. I think it won’t be decent to discuss anything more about the toilet here. So when we discovered the eating nature of the chicken we wandered what we have eaten last night and what we will be eating right now before leaving. So we took our breakfast with the same chicken and went out for Tajingdong.
Houses in Simplampi Para
Within 2 hrs we reached Tajingdong peak. It was like winning the world. We had done so hardship for last two days that I think it was worth it. The view from Tajngdong peak can’t be explainable. There are just mountains all over the place and shredded by clouds and mist. It was a fantastic scene to endeavor.
On the way to Tajingdong Peak
Saka-Hapong/Mowduk Twang/ Htlang Moy (unofficial highest peak of Bangladesh) seen from Tajingdong
View from Tajingdong Peak
We were at the top of Tajingdong for 30-45 mins. Then agian we started out for Thanchi Bazar. From where we would travel back to Bandarban city and eventually to Dhaka.
So, we walked very fast this time taking rest less frequently because we had to reach Thanchi by nightfall any how. At about 11:30 we reached Serkhor para ( a Bawm village). We took some rest there. There we met a Bawm girl named Moi-Don. She was a pretty girl and our guide was flirting with her whole- heartedly and when before leaving the house the girl gave us a “Pitha” ( a type of cake) made of rice which was wrapped in banana leaf.
Taking rest with Shakib Khan & Shabnoor.
Moi-Don and his family
After leaving Sherkhor para we trekked more 2-3 hrs before reaching Boarding Para. It’s a Murong village. The village peoploe didn’t seemed very friendly we had to go to three house before we got some hot water for cooking and a shed for resting. The village was at the foot of the mountains at the flatland. We took our lunch (noodles) there.
There was no spoon at the house so we took our noodles by hand
The tour was at its last day and at the last few hours. So we were walking at the steady pace and gulping the scenic beauty as much as we can. At last we reached Thanchi Bazaar at evening.
Kamalabagan (orange garden) – just before Thanchi
Our 4 day walk finished at Thanchi Bazar. It was a n excellent tour. A campaign in which every moment is cherishable for the rest of our life and at the same time an inspiration to come back again to the mountains.
The group at the end of the campaign @ Thanchi Bazaar
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